There’s been a lot of angst recently over America’s trade deficit with China, but it seems the United States has finally found something that it can successfully export to the People’s Republic: patent suits! Per the Dow Jones Newswire, a Chinese company called Shanghai Zhi Zhen Internet Technology has filed a patent suit against Apple claiming that it had originally patented the technology behind Siri all the way back in 2004. A company spokesman says that Zhi Zhen holds a patent for a digital personal assistant known as Xiao i Robot, a Mandarin-language automated voice system that’s “similar to Siri.” This all raises an obvious question, of course: How long until Steve Wozniak comes out and says that Xiao i Robot is superior to his former company’s voice-enabled software in every respect?


Prior to joining BGR as News Editor, Brad Reed spent five years covering the wireless industry for Network World. His first smartphone was a BlackBerry but he has since become a loyal Android user.